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Olive harvest underway at Sacred Heart Schools

 
Preschool and kindergarten Sacred Heart Schools students pick olives on Oct. 25. About 800 pounds of olives will be pressed into olive oil that will be sold at the annual Sacred Heart Holiday Boutique. (Photo courtesy of Sacred Heart Schools)

Students at Sacred Heart Schools in Atherton are getting a unique lesson in agriculture this fall by taking part in the process of making olive oil.

Harvest season is in full swing for the 50 olive trees that sit along Elena Avenue on the Catholic school's campus. Students have helped harvest the olives for the last decade.

This year, they'll collect about 800 pounds of olives, which will be pressed into olive oil.

Harvesting the koroneiki and arbosana olives “continues a tradition of educating students about how food products arrive from tree to table, and upholds a mandate from the founding RSCJ (Religious of the Sacred Heart) to be responsible for creation and be stewards of the earth,” said Stewart Slafter, who directs the sustainable garden and farm program at the school.

Students will bottle the olive oil on campus in early November with a label designed by sophomore Allegra Torres-Kelly.

The olives will be milled off-site into extra-virgin olive oil, which will be sold at the annual Sacred Heart Holiday Boutique from Nov. 28 to 30. The funds raised will benefit the SHP Parents' Association.

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